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NEWS | Jan. 11, 2023

M1-Series Tank: Coast Your Way to Proper Track Tension

BLUF: Proper M1-series tank track adjustment involves allowing the tank to coast to a stop before adding grease.
   
Worn end connectors and cupped sprocket teeth are common problems with M1-series tanks with improperly tensioned track.
 
Crewmen sometimes pump grease into the track adjusting link and leave it at that. But they’re missing a very important step. The TM says when adjusting track tension to move the tank backward 20 feet, then forward 20 feet on a level surface before pumping grease into the track adjusting link.

But don’t hit the brakes when doing this.
Instead, allow the tank to coast to a stop.
 
Letting the tank coast to a stop ensures that the track adjusting link is the only thing pressing against the track when you add grease. If you use the brakes to stop the tank, the weight of the tank is thrown forward when it stops. That leaves some track sections tight and others loose. Adjusting the track then usually results in overtightened track that wears out end connectors and cups sprockets.
 
You’ll find more information about track tension procedures in TM 9-2350-264-10 (Sep 11, w/Ch 4, Jan 18) for the M1A1, TM 9-2350-388-10 (Jan 18, w/Ch 2, Oct 21) the M1A2 SEPv2 and TM 9-2350-412-10 (Apr 20, w/Ch 1, Jan 22) for the M1A2 SEPv3.
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